Guy Fawkes: Stay safe
Although beautiful to watch, fireworks are not without their dangers.
A special word of warning - many pets are so traumatised by fireworks displays, they run away from home. So keep them locked up and away from the action.
So before you light that rocket, brush up on some safety tips
- Pay attention: Always keep fireworks in their original boxes. Pay close attention to the instructions and warnings.
- Think ahead: Keep a bucket of water nearby in case of a malfunctioning firework.
- Steer clear: Be sure to set off the fireworks in an area clear of people.
- Watch out for grass: Fireworks should only be lit in a designated area away from homes and other buildings, trees and cars. Never light fireworks on the grass, but always on a smooth, flat surface such as concrete or the pavement.
- Give it time: If a firework does not ignite, do not attempt to re-light it. Wait at least 15 minutes before you investigate.
- Watch your hands: Never allow children to touch, handle or light fireworks.
- Pet owners: Take special precaution in keeping their pets safe. Don’t take pets to firework shows - rather lock them up safely inside the house. Pick up leftover sparklers or other sharp objects, as these could injure your pet later. A mild sedative or tranquilliser can calm the fears of an extremely stressed animal. Speak to your vet about this.
- Sparklers can be dangerous too: Always light sparklers one at a time and wear gloves. Never hold a baby or child if you have a sparkler in your hands. Put finished sparklers with the hot end down in a bucket of water as soon as they have burnt out. Don’t take sparklers to crowded public displays, as it will be too crowded to use them safely.
- Age restriction: Never give sparklers to the under fives - they will not understand how to use them safely. Always supervise children using sparklers. Give children gloves to wear when holding sparklers. Avoid dressing children in loose or flowing clothes as they may catch fire. Show children how to hold sparklers away from their bodies and at arm’s length. Teach them not to wave sparklers near anyone else or run while holding them.
What are your thoughts on Guy Fawkes Day? And do you practice it safely?
- In an emergency: Cool the burn or scald with cold water for at least 10 minutes. Cut around material sticking to the skin - don't pull it off. Don't touch the burn or burst any blisters. Cover the burn with clean, non-fluffy material - cling film is ideal - to prevent infection. If clothing catches fire, get the person to stop, drop to the floor and roll them in heavy material such as a wool blanket.